Hill tribe (Thai: ชาวดอย, ชาวเขา, คนเขา,, Thai pronunciation: [tɕʰāːw.dɔ̄ːj, tɕʰāːw.kʰǎw, kʰōn.kʰǎw]) (Northern Thai: จาวดอย, คนดอย, Northern Thai pronunciation: [t͡ɕāːw.dɔ̄ːj, xōn.dɔ̄ːj]; "mountain people/folk") is a term used in Thailand for all of the various ethnic groups who mostly inhabit the high mountainous Northern and Westernregions of Thailand, including both sides of the border areas between Northern Thailand, Laos and Burma, the Phi Pan Nam Range, the Thanon Range, the latter a southern prolongation of the Shan Hills, as well as the Tenasserim Hills in Western Thailand. These areas are known for their often mountainous terrain which is in some areas covered by thick forests, while in others it has been heavily affected by deforestation.
The hill dwelling peoples have traditionally been primarily subsistence farmers who use slash-and-burn agricultural techniques to farm their heavily forestedcommunities. Popular perceptions that slash and burn practices are environmentally destructive, government concerns over borderland security, and population pressure has caused the government to forcibly relocate many hill tribe peoples. Traditionally, hill tribes were also a migratory people, leaving land as it became depleted ofnatural resources or when trouble arose. Cultural and adventure travel tourism resulting in visiting the tribal villages is an increasing source of income for the hill tribes, though it's ethicacy is often debated.
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